GRAY — You could say that Alie Martell had ice water in her veins in the seventh inning Wednesday.

But between the cold temperatures and steady rain at that point, the sophomore Gray-New Gloucester pitcher was probably ice cold from head to toe. As if that weren’t bothersome enough, she wasn’t throwing strikes.

“It was stressful, but I knew I had the defense behind me,” Martell said. “I was confident in my pitches. I knew we could get the last few outs.”

With a four-run lead entering the final inning, the Patriots watched Falmouth threaten that lead. Martell walked two and Falmouth produced a pair of hits to close the gap. Martell found the strike zone and escaped the threat as the Patriots held off the Yachtsmen for a 7-5 win.

“It was hard with the rain, but I tried to block it out,” Martell said. “I didn’t care about my surroundings. I just tried to throw the ball.”

Down 7-3 entering the seventh, Falmouth loaded the bases with two singles and a walk. One run scored on a wild pitch. Then another walk loaded the bases again. After a diving catch by Hannah Dixon at short got the first out, an error on an Allison Murphy fly plated another run to make it 7-5. Martell struck out the next batter and then summoned up a groundout to Dixon to end the game.

“I realized what I had to do,” said Martell, who came on in relief of starter Hayley True in the fifth. “So I did that. We needed to get this win. I needed to get my first-pitch strikes. So I had that in my head that I could throw that pitch.”

It was an important win for the Patriots (5-2) after two straight losses  to Wells (18-14)  and  York (7-0). The win over Class A South Falmouth bounced Gray-NG up to fourth in B South.

“We went through a couple of pretty bad games,” junior outfielder Cara Waltz said. “We’ve practiced a lot. We knew what we did wrong. We came in today confident and we knew what we had to improve on.”

Alexa Thayer had two hits and two RBI, while Waltz had a pair of hits and drove in a run. Martell also had a pair of hits. The Patriots also got some stellar defense. Waltz made a tremendous running catch in left. Dixon made a diving stop at second as well as at short.

“It just showed heart and showed some character,” said Gray-NG coach Amanda Harmon, whose team overcame a 3-1 deficit early. “They stayed strong and worked well as a team. Even though we had some obvious errors, we picked each other up.”

Falmouth built a 3-1 lead in the third, but the Patriots took the lead back in the bottom of the inning. After a Waltz triple, she scored on a Thayer fielder’s choice. Skye Conley singled in Thayer. Then a Kaelyn Wood single and error plated Martell and Conley for the 4-3 lead.

“I was confident in everybody’s batting to get back up,” Waltz said of the deficit. “Their pitcher was a nice speed for us. So we knew we could do it.”

Gray-NG added two more in the sixth. A double by Waltz scored Emily Brewer. Thayer followed with an infield hit that plated Waltz for the 7-3 lead.

“Once we got the bats going, it created a domino effect with our team,” Waltz said. “We just got more excited and confident with each other.”

The Patriots took a 1-0 lead in the second when Dixon tripled and scored on an error on a Mickayla Ryan fly. Falmouth took the lead in the third when Liberty Ladd singled in a run and Jessica Collins followed with a two-run double.

Collins finished with two hits and two RBI. Ladd and pitcher Julia Treadwell each had a pair of hits. Treadwell allowed 10 hits and struck out six.

True had a fine start for the Patriots. She went four innings and allowed just three runs on six hits, striking out four. Martell came on in the fifth and struck out five, allowing two runs on three hits. Martell coming in with a fresh arm and a little more zip on her pitches proved to be a nice change of pace to throw at the Yacthsmen late in the game.

“I think they’re both a great combination each way,” Harmon said. “Whoever starts and whoever finishes, they both do something different, and it works defensively for us either way.”

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